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Meeting No. 17
Tuesday, June 1, 2010

The Standing Committee on Public Accounts met at 9:01 a.m. this day, in Room 200, West Block, the Chair, Shawn Murphy, presiding.


Members of the Committee present: David Christopherson, Hon. Stéphane Dion, Earl Dreeshen, Meili Faille, Daryl Kramp, Derek Lee, Hon. Shawn Murphy, Andrew Saxton, Bev Shipley and Terence Young.


Acting Members present: France Bonsant for Josée Beaudin.


In attendance: Library of Parliament: Maria Edwards, Analyst; Alex Smith, Analyst.


Witnesses: Office of the Auditor General of Canada: Sheila Fraser, Auditor General of Canada; Nancy Cheng, Assistant Auditor General. Treasury Board Secretariat: Michelle d'Auray, Secretary of the Treasury Board of Canada; Corinne Charette, Chief Information Officer. Department of Human Resources and Skills Development: Gini Bethell, Chief Information Officer. Department of Public Works and Government Services: Maurice Chénier, Chief Executive Officer, Information Technology Services Branch; John Rath-Wilson, Chief Operating Officer, Information Technology Services Branch. Department of Citizenship and Immigration Canada: Borys Koba, Chief Information Officer and Director General, Information Management and Technologies Branch. Canada Revenue Agency: Peter Poulin, Assistant Commissioner and Chief Information Officer, Information Technology Branch. Royal Canadian Mounted Police: Joe Buckle, Chief Information Officer; Brendan Dunne, Director General, Information Management and Information Technology (IM/IT) Business Solutions.

Pursuant to Standing Order 108(3)(g), and the motion adopted by the Committee on Thursday, April 22, 2010, the Committee commenced consideration of Chapter 1, “ Aging Information Technology Systems,” of the Spring 2010 Report of the Auditor General of Canada.

Sheila Fraser, Michelle d'Auray, Gini Bethell, Maurice Chénier, Borys Koba, Peter Poulin and Joe Buckle made statements, and with Brendan Dunne and Corinne Charette, answered questions.

The Committee proceeded to the consideration of matters related to Committee business.

The Chair presented the Seventh Report from the Subcommittee on Agenda and Procedure which read as follows:

Your Subcommittee met on Wednesday, May 26, 2010, to consider the business of the Committee and agreed to make the following recommendation:

That, in relation to the Committee’s study of the Main Estimates 2010-2011: Vote 15 under FINANCE and Part III - Report on Plans and Priorities and Departmental Performance Report of the Office of the Auditor General of Canada, and the testimony of the Auditor General of Canada before the Committee on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 concerning difficulties experienced by her office with access to information from government organizations, the Chair be authorized to write to the Secretary of the Treasury Board to request a copy of the instructions provided to deputy ministers and departmental legal counsel regarding the Auditor General’s rights of access to information when conducting audits.


On motion of Bev Shipley, it was agreed, — That the report of the Subcommittee be concurred in.


Meili Faille gave notice of the following motion:

Given that the Public Accounts Committee has published reports on issues related to Information Technology (IT) since 1995,

Given that the Office of the Auditor General has published reports on issues related to Information Technology (IT) since 1995,

That the House of Commons Committee on Public Accounts, in light of the significant risks to IT in the coming years and the need to be proactive, as well as the lack of feasibility studies on future IT projects, request that the Parliamentary Budget Officer review the costs, expenditures and detailed estimates of government spending in information technology and report back by November 30, 2010.

At 11:08 a.m., the Committee adjourned to the call of the Chair.


Joann Garbig
Clerk of the Committee

2010/06/02 10:57 a.m.